Haveri (Kar), Dec 9: There was heavy betting in Karnataka on how many legislators BS Yeddyurappa will attract for the launch of his Karnataka Janata Party (KJP) here today.
There were talks that it could be 25, or even 40. In the end, it turned out to be 13 and this number may become unlucky for the ruling BJP in Karnataka.
Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar's government has been reduced to a minority, at least technically. The equation in Karnataka was always delicate and with 13 legislators at Haveri, the strength of BJP Legislature Party which was 118 has become 105.
The halfway mark is 113 and Shettar has said that action will be taken against the MLAs with Yeddyurappa. What action the BJP will initiate against a few of the ministers who sat with the crowd remains to be seen.
Incidentally, four members of the Legislative Council and two MPs including Yeddyurappa's son Raghvendra were present at the venue of the meeting.
Congress has 71 members in the House whose total strength is 224. The Janata Dal (Secular) has 26 MLAs. There are seven Independents. Two seats in the Assembly are currently vacant.
Addressing his supporters after formally taking over as the president of KJP, Yeddyurappa, who was finding it difficult to control the crowd, demanded dissolution of the state Assembly.
He urged the people of Karnataka to support his new party and vote it to power in the next elections. Announcing that he will soon embark from Bidar on a state-wide tour, Yeddyurappa said that he will visit all the districts one by one to ascertain the grievances of the voters.
Stating that his party workers will try to realise Mahatma Gandhi's dream of Ram Rajya, he named BR Ambedkar and Jayaprakash Narayan as his other idols.
Earlier in the day, 21 BJP legislators and four Lok Sabha members turned up for the breakfast meeting that was hosted by Yeddyurappa. Seven MLCs also attended what was described by Yeddyurappa supporters as just a "tea party".